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Saudi Wealth Fund Weighs New Airport in Riyadh for Tourism Drive

  • Hub would serve planned airline targeting business, tourists
  • Saudia would focus on religious pilgrims from base in Jeddah
RF plane Silhouette HP

Photographer: JethuynhCan/Moment RF/Getty Images

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Saudi Arabia is considering building a new airport in its capital Riyadh, according to people familiar with the matter, a facility that would serve as a base for a new airline the kingdom’s sovereign wealth fund is looking to launch as it targets a vast increase in tourist arrivals.

The $430 billion fund said earlier this year it plans to invest in aviation to help capture the tourist boom envisioned by Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman. The new airline, reported locally earlier this year, would serve tourists and business travelers, while existing flag carrier Saudia would focus on religious tourism from its base in Jeddah, said the people, who asked not to be identified due to the sensitivity of the matter.